Only a couple more sleeps before we crank things up at Emer Halpenny School of Drama - and since we're building up to our big plans for the old quarter century celebrations early next year, we'd like as many people as possible to join us.
Think of us as an extended family - I never really say goodbye to anyone as you can see from this selfie taken at a recent girls night out with former students, all of whom went on to teach at the school. We've got a good team still and our ethos is simple: build confidence in people of all ages - we've been doing it since 1990 - and I like to think we've gotten good at it.
Whether you're already part of the family, or you'd like to see what it's all about, LIKE and SHARE our Facebook page and be in with a chance to win a free term worth €180.
Term starts next week - get sharing!
I listened recently to this great TED article by Julian Treasure on your voice and how to use it.
Really well worth a look for those that are interested in communicating successfully. I love his philosophy and hopefully the methods we use here at the Emer Halpenny school can bring us similar results with our students. Sound!
“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”
Yes, it’s getting nippy and I notice Aldi selling boxes of extra long matches, which means we’re nearing cosy fire season. For us in the EH School it means we’re putting down the summer novels and huddling together to discuss our Autumn and Winter term – which we are all looking forward to, especially since we are starting new classes for the first time in three years.
Congratulations to everyone who made it through their exams – hope you were happy with the results. I know a certain gal who is anyway, and that’s our own Angela Devine, who has completed her final teaching exams with first class honours. Couldn’t be more proud of her! Angela, along with the rest of the team (Stuart, Lachlan, Billie, Niamh and Aisling) and myself have been working on the new term’s work, keeping in mind that next year the school will celebrate 25 years. I know! I don’t look that old, do I? More on those celebrations again.
Meanwhile, we are very excited about the new musical theatre classes that are starting up on Saturday afternoons. Initially we plan to run two 6 week terms of musical theatre, incorporating singing, dancing and acting, with a view to eventually staging a full musical show. There are very reasonable rates for anyone wanting to join this class as well as their regular drama class – you can check the details on the website. Having learned my trade in musical theatre back in the nineties, and having been the national adjudicator for the Association of Irish Musical Societies for a couple of years, it will be fun to get back into directing musicals again!
In other news, word is that Tommy Dillon from Fair City (aka Geoff Minogue) has been spotted at the EH School headquarters and it seems he may be holding a workshop or two with Youth Theatre, along with other industry professionals. Stand by for full details of that.
Check out the website and facebook page, or text, email or buzz me for more details.
It’s a quiet summer this year with no summer camp, though the teachers and I are busy organizing the new year’s programme for September 2014 and into 2015. We’re kind of excited here in the EH headquarters, as come 2015 we’re going to be planning celebrating the school’s 25th anniversary! I know I’ll be looking for any old excuse to party and you can expect to hear all about what we have planned in due course!
For this new term, September 2014 we are starting some new ventures detailed below, along with new classes for juniors:
Acting for the Stage and Screen workshops:
As part of our Youth theatre we will be arranging acting workshops for students aged 12 – 18 years who are interested in improving their acting skills, understanding the difference between the stage, television and film performances and how to approach an audition. These workshops will be conducted with the help of actor Geoff Minogue, aka Tommy Dillon from Fair City!…
On Saturdays we will be dancing, singing and acting out bits from our favourite musicals. It’s new so we’re going to ease into things with two short terms. If it proves popular, I have a feeling this group will be able to take on a full musical in no time. Watch this space!
We did it – we created a credible (amazing, actually) pop up theatre right in the middle of the sports hall in our homeland St. Laurence’s Parish Centre… Since the ceiling in the hall has been lowered and acoustics have improved, Angela and myself have been rubbing our chins and saying ‘hmmm…’ and ‘I wonder…’ a lot. Youth Theatre sulked a little when I announced we would stage DNA in the hall but by golly they soon came round. Check out the photos to see how we built our theatre and along with some hired in lighting (thanks to Stage Lighting for the great price) we made a bit o magic. As Aidan said – oh, did I mention Aidan Gillen was at the play? As Aidan said, all you need is an empty space (he may have been quoting Peter Brooke) and it’s true. Thanks to the audience who donated so generously towards the cost of investing in our own lighting – we made €170 on donations alone. It means, dear students and parents, that we can continue to produce fine plays and fun plays in the comfort of our own home (thanks to St Laurence’s manager Helen for her support) and really feel like we’ve gone out to the theatre.
DNA, the play itself was super, better than I had hoped and my thanks and respect go to the cast and crew, Angela and Geoff – oh, did I mention Geoff Minogue was there? Geoff not only sorted out the lighting with Angela but videoed the play too, so hope to have something for the cast to see soon.
Performances just before Easter from every other class – details will be texted this week, and it’s movie-making time when we get back – great excitement already about that.
Finally, if you fancy seeing our Lachlan hugging the Six Nations Trophy, go to the homepage on the website! I thanked Les for releasing Lachlan from family duties for the weekend.
Oh, did I mention Les Kiss was there?....